This was one of those books that grabbed me because of the cover. I Picked it up, read the back, and immediately put it on my “to read” list. For me, choosing a historical-fiction biblical novel is tricky. I’ve read some that were very good and some… not so much. But my reading mojo called to me to read this book, so I did.
You know going in that liberties will be taken because this is a novel, the fun part is finding out where. I will say that I did go back and reread the Biblical (NIV) story of Noah after I read this book to 1. Refresh my memory and 2. To see which liberties were taken.
Did I enjoy this book? Yes. I liked how Rebecca told the story of Noah. She took the Biblical story, mixed in her own story, and filled in the “holes”. While the story mainly revolved Noah and his wife I must admit that I was very taken (and revolted) by Javan. She was as horrible and disgusting as she was intriguing. Given the fact that we knew how wicked the world was at that time, I wouldn’t be surprised if God chose to end the world based on what she did on say… Wednesday. When your evil stands out in a world of evil… your ass is evil!!
Rebecca takes us on a journey from before the flood, during the flood, after the flood, and after the water recedes. The part where this story slowed down for me was when they were on the ark. The brothers Ham, Shem, and Japheth have some very serious conflicts, some of which made me wonder if the flood might have missed a few people. This is but one of the places where purists will have a problem with the creative liberties taken. Especially when it comes to the brother’s wives, wow. Unfortunately, this was the only highlight to their time spent on the ark. At least for me.
The ending was very interesting. (No spoilers). A couple of things happened that made me “this didn’t happen in the Bible… did it”? I went back and reread Genesis and it did indeed not happen. But what an interesting imagination Rebecca had to write it in the direction it went. I haven’t looked hard enough to see if there will be a sequel but there very easily could be because this story ended quite abruptly. Actually… yeah it did end pretty “BAM”!! But there was a weird resolution to one very big part of this story.
All in all I was very pleased with this debut novel from Rebecca Kanner, and I look forward to more of her work.